The amino acids can provide relief when you have mold-induced anxiety – anxiety and panic attacks that are triggered by physiological changes due to mold toxicity such as inflammation and effects on your immune system and neurotransmitters. There is also the anxiety and worry you’re feeling because of the frightening situation you find yourself in and this trauma has a psychological and physiological effect. The anxiety, worry, fears, insomnia and imagining the worst is often compounded by low levels of GABA and serotonin. Benzodiazepines and/or SSRIs are commonly prescribed and only add to the toxic burden. The amino acids GABA, tryptophan and/or DPA/Endorphigen, used as supplements, are better options that address the root causes of low GABA, low serotonin and/or low endorphins. And for some folks, Heartmath and EFT offer additional emotional and calming support (as you’ll read below).
Micki Contini, MS CNC, a board-certified holistic health and nutrition consultant, is a friend and colleague whose life was hugely impacted by mold toxicity. She has kindly given me permission to share her story in the hope it’s helpful for you if you’re in a similar situation. She shares her mold-induced anxiety symptoms and the other ways mold toxicity impacted her health:
My heart was pounding, my face was red, I was sweating, my thoughts were racing and I felt like I was going to die. I wondered if I was having a heart attack? My husband brought me to the emergency room several times with panic attacks and heart palpitations with me thinking this was the end only to find out that I was “fine.” But I knew that I was far from ok. I knew that something was wrong, I just didn’t know what.
I had found mold in my water damaged office. Shortly thereafter I realized it was also in my home. I had cross-contaminated my house, but it was a year before I knew my house had mold. I had been getting better but not 100%. It was a step I missed because I didn’t want to face the truth of what the consequences would bring – throwing out more stuff. I had already thrown out most of the stuff from my contaminated office BUT not all of the stuff. And I paid dearly for not throwing out ALL the things from my office.
I was in denial and I had toxic mold poisoning. Toxic mold was causing my anxiety and panic attacks and other debilitating symptoms such brain fog, tinnitus, trouble focusing, numbness and tingling in my fingers and toes, crazy fatigue, shortness of breath, nausea, diarrhea/constipation, excessive thirst, vertigo, night sweats and bloody nose.
Micki already knew about my work and had been using my book, The Antianxiety Food Solution, with anxious clients in her functional nutrition practice, so she immediately considered the amino acids for her mold-induced anxiety and panic attacks.
GABA for her physical anxiety and panic attacks
When Micki reached out to me, I encouraged her to explore GABA for her physical anxiety and panic attacks, tryptophan for her racing thoughts and DPA/Endorphigen for the crying and emotional symptoms she was experiencing.
The good news is that her anxiety and tension started to fade as soon as she added sublingual GABA Calm to her protocol. She shares this about how GABA helped her
As they started tearing my house apart for remediation, I started eating GABA Calm like candy. At the beginning I had to have a lot more than I do now. GABA Calm takes me down a notch and I feel my shoulder coming away from my ears and I get closer to relaxing.
GABA is well known for relieving the physical tension experienced when you have anxiety. We have GABA receptors in our muscles and many of my clients feel this obvious release of neck tension as the anxiety eases. This release of muscle tension also helps with the kind of insomnia where you lie in bed feeling stiff and tense and can’t switch off your busy mind going 100 miles an hour.
GABA for immune support and toxin protection
What is really interesting when it comes to mold toxicity and GABA is that research shows that GABA can support immunity. GABA also protects the thyroid against fluoride-induced toxicity and counters the toxic effects of phthalates, so I suspect research will eventually show that GABA also offers protection against other environmental toxins such as mold.
Biofeedback and tapping for additional emotional support
Micki also used Heartmath (a type of biofeedback) and EFT (emotional freedom technique or tapping) for additional support while she was in the midst of all this:
I added Heartmath Inner Balance app and Emwave because I had used them prior to this challenge and it helps because you go through a thought pattern where you’re concentrating on gratitude and what’s right vs what’s wrong. That was powerful for me. Still is.
I used EFT to break the pattern of doom and gloom. When I was really sick I felt like another bad terrible thing was going to happen at any moment like I was on guard or on watch. So anything I could do to break that mind set I did.
Micki found what worked for her and that’s key when you’re in this situation. I’ve had many clients not succeed with Heartmath or EFT so don’t feel bad if these approaches don’t work for you.
Tryptophan and/or DPA/Endorphigen for the gloom and doom
I’ve had many many clients successfully use tryptophan for the spinning and overwhelming feeling that many folks with mold toxicity experience. Tryptophan and/or DPA can also help the pattern of doom and gloom Micki described.
Recent research also shows that GABA helps you switch off unwanted thoughts too so it’s possible Micki didn’t need tryptophan for this reason.
She doesn’t remember all the supplements that she used when she was really REALLY sick. This is very typical when you’re in the midst of dealing with mold toxicity (and a good reason to try and keep a log) but she seems to recall that DPA/Endorphigen may have helped with the emotional trauma of it all.
The wonderful news is that today Micki is doing so much better! The amino acid GABA, together with Heartmath and EFT provided much-needed anxiety relief and emotional support while Micki was remediating her home, detoxing her body with daily infrared sauna sessions and following mold toxicity nutritional protocols.
Micki’s gift is that she has become a mold expert
When you’re in the midst of all this you can’t imagine that there can be a gift in what you’re going through but there always is. For Micki, her gift is that she has become a mold expert and now helps others navigate their mold healing journey via SimpleGoodHealth. She shares this:
As you may know, the road to recovery from mold illness is a long hard one, but I can make it easier for you. I have become an expert out of necessity.
We appreciate Micki for sharing her anxiety-induced mold story.
Resources if you are new to the amino acids
If you are new to the amino acids, here is the Amino Acids Mood Questionnaire from The Antianxiety Food Solution and additional information on Anxiety and targeted individual amino acid supplements: a summary
This lists The Antianxiety Food Solution Amino Acid and Pyroluria Supplements that I use with my individual clients and those in my group programs – you will find the GABA Calm and other GABA products, tryptophan and DPA/Endorphigen here.
If you suspect low GABA symptoms and are new to using the amino acids and do not have my book I highly recommend getting it and reading it before jumping in to taking the amino acids as supplements: The Antianxiety Food Solution – How the Foods You Eat Can Help You Calm Your Anxious Mind, Improve Your Mood, and End Cravings.
Let us know if you’ve used GABA or tryptophan with success for mold-induced anxiety and panic attacks, and DPA/Endorphigen for helping with weepiness.
And let us know what other approaches you’ve used for helping with the anxiety and other emotional impacts of mold toxicity.
Feel free to post your questions here too.